Requirements for Secondary Education Certification (Grades 7-12)

Arcadia University is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to certify students in the following six secondary education areas: Biology, Chemistry, General Science, English, Mathematics and Social Studies. Prospective secondary teachers must complete requirements in their respective disciplinary major—Biology, Chemistry, English, Mathematics or Social Studies (History, Political Science, Psychology and Sociology majors).

In addition, candidates for certification complete coursework in the Professional Education Core designed to prepare students to teach in grades 7-12. This constitutes a minor in Secondary Education. Advisers in the respective liberal arts and sciences departments will guide the student in the selection of disciplinary content courses, while secondary education faculty guide the student through the certification and Professional Education Core requirements.

Students interested in secondary certification should consult with their disciplinary adviser or their respective education adviser as early as possible, preferably freshman year. Secondary Education students must declare a minor in Secondary Education in conjunction with registering for their first Education course. All Arcadia undergraduates seeking certification, except those who transfer to the University in their junior year, apply into the certification program during the spring semester of their sophomore year. See the section outlining the application process for all certification candidates.

Requirements for Certification

The following Professional Education courses are required for Secondary Education certification. Courses with an asterisk (*) are courses that apply to the Arcadia University Undergraduate Curriculum requirements:

1. Seven courses in Education and Student Teaching

  • ED110 Teaching for Learning, 7-12 (also meets Self and Society requirement) *
  • ED201 Teachers as Researchers and Writers
  • ED306 Strategic Instruction in Emergent and Content Area Literacy
  • ED315 Differentiated Instruction in Inclusive Classrooms *
  • ED375 Managing an Inclusive Classroom 
  • ED411 Designing Learning Environments
  • US324  ESL: Understanding Language Learning: Using Two Languages to Engage with the World (4 credits; also meets Writing, Self and Society and Crossing Boundaries designated requirement) *
  • Full Day Field. Fulfilled in the semester before student teaching

2. Choose only one methodology course appropriate to your area of certification.

  • ED412a Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: English
  • ED412b Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Social Studies
  • ED412c Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Mathematics
  • ED412d Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Science

3. Student Teaching

  • ED417 Student Teaching Secondary Education (12 credits)*

4. Additional courses required by PDE (PA Code, Chapter 354)

  • At least one course in Written Communication: EN 101 Thought and Expression I (4 credits)*
  • One course in American/English Literature: EN 229 Voices of America (4 credits; Recommended; also meets Cultural Legacies requirement)*
  • Any two courses in Mathematics above MA 100. Students not majoring in mathematics or science can take MA 117 Mathematics Concepts I and MA 118 Mathematics Concepts II (also meets Quantitative Reasoning requirement)*

* Courses that also meet Undergraduate Curriculum requirements

Suggested Course Sequence

The following courses should be taken in the following sequence. Required Professional Education courses that also meet the Arcadia University Undergraduate Curriculum requirements are noted with an asterisk (*).

Freshman Year (8 credits)

  • Fall: EN101 Thought and Communication I*
  • Spring: ED110 Teaching for Learning, Secondary Education (7-12)*

Sophomore Year

Fall

  • ED201 Teachers as Researchers and Writers*
  • One course in Mathematics: MA 110, MA 117, MA 118, or MA 141 are recommended for majors who do not have a mathematics requirement *

Spring

  • A second course in Mathematics: MA 110, MA 117, MA 118, or MA 141 are recommended for majors who do not have a mathematics requirement *
  • American Literature, EN 229*
  • ED306 Strategies for Emergent and Content Area Literacy
  • US324 ESL: Understanding Language Learners

NOTE: Certification program candidates also should complete the PAPA test series by the end of the sophomore year and submit passing scores when applying into the School of Education teacher certification program (GPA of 3.0 required).

Junior Year (11 credits)

Fall

  • ED411 Designing Learning Environments

Spring

  • ED315 Differentiated Instruction in Inclusive Classrooms

NOTE: In the spring semester, candidates for certification must do the following: Obtain Student Teaching Information from the Office of School and Community Collaborations.

Senior Year First Semester

Fall

1. Choose only one course appropriate to your area of certification from the following:

  • ED412a Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: English
  • ED412b Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Social Studies
  • ED412c Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Mathematics
  • ED412d Curriculum and Methodology for Grades 7-12: Science

2. Take the following course:

  • ED375 Managing an Inclusive Classroom

NOTE: In the fall semester, candidates for certification must do the following:

  • Complete the PRAXIS Tests.
  • Complete Spring Student Teaching applications and submit by September deadline.
  • Have GPA of 3.0 required for admission.
  • Make sure all clearances are current and valid.

Spring

  • ED 417 Student Teaching (14 weeks full-time teaching)

Different Pathways to Secondary Education Certification

Three different pathways can be taken that will ultimately lead to certification in a secondary education area. Students should choose the option that best suits their needs. The decision should be made in consultation with their School of Education adviser and should be determined as early as possible, preferably in the freshman or sophomore year.

Option 1: Complete all course requirements and student teaching during the four years of undergraduate study, earning a bachelor's degree, minor in Secondary Education, and teacher certification at the same time. (Some courses may be taken during the summer or online.)

Option 2: Complete the requirements for a major in an appropriate field and a minor in Education during the four years of undergraduate study, earning a bachelor's degree and eligibility for a Graduate Intern Certification (requires passing scores on the PAPA and PRAXIS II examinations). This allows recipients to teach full-time in a public school classroom while continuing to take courses to fulfill the teacher certification Instructional I requirements during the next three calendar years. These courses could be taken through Arcadia University's graduate program and would be credited toward a master’s degree.

Option 3: Complete the requirements for a major in an appropriate field during the four years of undergraduate study, earning a bachelor's degree. Then take all the required Education courses for teacher certification at the graduate level.

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